After a tooth whitening treatment, your teeth may be prone to staining unless you're careful what you eat or drink until the treatment has had time to settle down. What shouldn't you eat or drink after a treatment and how long should you avoid these staining foods and drinks?
What Not to Eat
Food that are highly coloured may stain your teeth again, undoing some of dazzle from your new smile. To ensure the best results after a whitening treatment, you should avoid the following foods:
- Red coloured sauces, such as tomato sauces.
- Foods that may contain strong food colourings or coloured spices such as curries or chili.
- Dishes that are heavy on coloured ingredients such as soy sauce or mustards.
- Coloured vegetables such as beetroot.
What Not to Drink
You may also reduce the effects of your whitening treatment if you drink coloured drinks. For example, it's best to avoid the following drinks:
- Coffee and tea.
- Brightly coloured fizzy or soft drinks and juices.
- Red wine.
- As a rule of thumb, you can work out what not to eat and drink by thinking about whether the food or drink would stain your clothes if you spilled it. If it would, then you may want to find something else to eat or drink that is less colourful.
- If you really can't get by without a cup of tea or other favourite drink, try drinking it through a straw. This may help keep the liquid from settling on your teeth.
Other Things That May Stain Your Teeth
As well as monitoring what you eat and drink, you should also think about other things that might affect your new whitening treatment. For example, you may want to avoid wearing lipstick for a while. If lipstick gets on your teeth, it may stain. It's also a good idea not to smoke after a whitening procedure to avoid building up new tobacco stains on your newly whitened teeth.
How Long to Avoid Colours
According to CHOICE, you should typically watch what you eat and drink for a couple of days after a treatment. However, if your whitening treatment is applied in stages, it may be best to bite the bullet and avoid eating anything that might stain until you're completely done with all your whitening treatments. For exact advice based on the type of treatment you're using, consult the kit instructions, or ask your beautician or dentist for a precise timescale.
Bear in mind that your teeth may stain again over time once you start re-introducing coloured food and drinks in to your diet. To keep your smile as white as possible for as long as possible, you can also try cutting out coloured foods and drinks from your diet permanently if you can.